The 2nd round of the playoffs are heating up. The intensity of the playoffs are through the roof especially the matchup between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Miami Heat. After winning Game 3, the 76ers are looking to continue the momentum as they go into Game 4. The Heat are looking for the win to extend their lead to 3-1 and make it difficult for the 76ers.
The Philadelphia 76ers have gone with their starting lineup of James Harden, Tyrese Maxey, Danny Green, Tobias Harris and Joel Embiid. The Miami Heat started with Kyle Lowry, Max Strus, Jimmy Butler, PJ Tucker and Bam Adebayo.
With the opening tip, both teams had blood in their eyes as they locked horns against one another. The Heat started the scoring but the 76ers were keeping on pace with them. Defensively the 76ers were looking good ever since Embiid rejoined them.
The Heat were clamping down on Embiid and Harden and forcing turnovers from them. But that wasn’t stopping Embiid as he went to work early in the game to keep his team on the lead. The Heat were moving the ball around and they were making their shots consistently.
In the 2nd quarter, the Heat were struggling to get their shots to fall so Jimmy Butler was going to work. Seeing their opponents, James Harden went on the offensive with no intention of backing down. He gave a bit of vintage Harden vibes as he dribbled past defenders to make the shot and also was hitting his signature step back 3s. Nonetheless, the 76ers controlled the pace of the game, taking the lead with a score of 64-56.
Once the 3rd quarter stared, the 76ers continued to attack but the Heat were doing better defensively as they were contesting every shot. Jimmy Butler took over as he knew he had to carry his team with everyone else struggling. He put up 17 points in the quarter and helped the Heat cut the deficit as much as possible.
In the 4th quarter, they managed to catch up but then James Harden went on full MVP mode. He knocked down 4 threes from beyond the arc to put an exclamation mark on the game. The 76ers managed to hold down the Heat as they were unable to put anything to the hoop. The lead grew wider and the 76ers kept it secured till the final buzzer sounded.
James Harden led the 76ers in scoring with 31 points, 7 rebounds, 9 assists and a steal. Joel Embiid followed him up with a double-double of 24 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists and a block. Tyrese Maxey was instrumental as well putting up 18 points, 3 rebounds and 4 assists.
For the Miami Heat, Jimmy Butler explodes for 40 points, 3 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks. Bam Adebayo supported him with 21 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists. Victor Oladipo came off the bench and did a little bit of everything with 15 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals and 2 blocks.
Takeaways from Game 4
The Philadelphia 76ers have claimed Game 4 of the series with a scoreline of 116-108. They have now evened the series, 2-2 before going to Miami for Game 5. It looks like Harden is still capable of producing numbers like this and he ultimately kept his promise of winning two games in a row.
The Miami Heat are feeling a bit puzzled right now as to what’s next. Most importantly they need someone else to step up alongside Butler who has been killing it in the scoring department. It will be interesting to see whether the Heat will bring some changes or not.